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BusinessDay 11 Feb 2018

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20 BD SUNDAY Sunday 11 February 2018 Comment C002D5556 comment is free Send 800word comments to PUBLISHER/CEO Frank Aigbogun EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Prof. Onwuchekwa Jemie EDITOR Zebulon Agomuo DEPUTY EDITOR John Osadolor, Abuja ASSISTANT EDITOR Chuks Oluigbo NEWS EDITOR Patrick Atuanya EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, SALES AND MARKETING Kola Garuba EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, OPERATIONS Fabian Akagha EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DIGITAL SERVICES Oghenevwoke Ighure ADVERT MANAGER Adeola Ajewole MANAGER, SYSTEMS & CONTROL Emeka Ifeanyi HEAD OF SALES, CONFERENCES Rerhe Idonije SUBSCRIPTIONS MANAGER Patrick Ijegbai CIRCULATION MANAGER John Okpaire GM, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT (North) Bashir Ibrahim Hassan GM, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT (South) Ignatius Chukwu HEAD, HUMAN RESOURCES Adeola Obisesan EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD Dick Kramer - Chairman Imo Itsueli Mohammed Hayatudeen Albert Alos Funke Osibodu Afolabi Oladele Dayo Lawuyi Vincent Maduka Wole Obayomi Maneesh Garg Keith Richards Opeyemi Agbaje Amina Oyagbola Bolanle Onagoruwa Fola Laoye Chuka Mordi Sim Shagaya Mezuo Nwuneli Emeka Emuwa Charles Anudu Tunji Adegbesan Eyo Ekpo NEWS ROOM 08022238495 } Lagos 08034009034 08033160837 Abuja ADVERTISING 01-2799110 08116759801 08082496194 ENQUIRIES TAYO OGUNBIYI Ogunbiyi is of the Lagos State Ministry of Information & Strategy, Alausa, Ikeja Understandably, a major preoccupation of the Lagos State government is environmental regeneration. The government is challenged to invest in the environment because the Lagos is exposed to environmental abuse occasioned by intense economic and social activities. Lagos, for instance, generates 10,000 tonnes of waste daily, almost three times higher than what the whole of Ghana generates daily. Justifiably, solid waste management has, therefore, been recognized as decisive to the realization of the state government’s vision of making Lagos a clean, secure, and more prosperous State with a robust economy built on service, equity and justice. However, current realities in waste management reveal deficiencies that are not only wasteful in terms of resource utilization but also detrimental to environmental and public health. This existing position evidently does not ally with the state government’s vision of a Smart City. Therefore, there is an urgent need to bring it to the required level of international Understanding the ‘Cleaner Lagos’ initiative best practice. It is in order to provide a holistic solution to waste management in the state that the Clean Lagos Initiative, CLI was conceived. CLI represents a strong resolve and commitment to redefining solid waste management in the state. It is envisioned to deliver a new solid waste management mechanism that is devoid of the challenges of the old order. Part of the goals is to generate a new financially feasible and technology-driven waste management system to the Lagos economy with the ultimate target of creating new businesses and job opportunities. Through the new initiative, 600 brand new environment-friendly compactors and over 900,000 waste bins that are electronically tracked for ease of monitoring are to be provided. Equally, the scheme has offered over 40,000 jobs for residents, including 27,500 Community Sanitation Workers (CSW) who are to work within their residences in the entire 377 political wards in Lagos State. To sustain the collection operations, refitted old three transfer loading stations/MRF (Agege, Oshodi, Simpson) and two totally new MRF are to be built (Ogombo and Ojo) while three waste depots (Mushin, Ogudu, and Simpson) are being concessioned with the main goal of revitalizing and modifying the facilities to international standard. Similarly, under the new arrangement, primary, secondary and tertiary drains across the state will be maintained throughout the year to allow for free flow of storm water. Also, engineered sanitary/engineered hazardous landfills will be constructed under the Built, Finance, Operate and Transfer model in different locations across the state. The target is to guarantee safety of public health and the environment. An instructive aspect of the new plan is that it is set to inculcate in Lagos residents a rich culture of appropriate waste disposal. Part of the plan is to ensure that youths in secondary schools and tertiary institutions are brought into the deal. The purpose is to make certain that the future is guaranteed in terms of waste management in the state. Perhaps more importantly, the possibility of turning the huge waste that is generated in the state would be highly heightened through this fresh scheme. The idea is to make the dumpsites become usable resources from which methane will be extracted for electricity generation in Lagos State. Revolving waste into energy is an established technology that could help provide a major amount of domestic energy needs. Presently, the Olusosun dumpsite boasts of a recycling plant that processes waste into various products. A waste-to-wealth project will, no doubt, transform waste management into wealth creation venture that will help tackle the twain issue of poverty and unemployment. To complement government’s plans and efforts in promoting a cleaner Lagos, Lagos residents need to come to terms with the reality of the necessity for an improved environment. What is required to maintain a sane and friendly environment is not just about what the government is doing but also about the people’s attitude. Lagos residents need to understand that the quality of our lives, as human beings, is considerably a reflection of the quality of the environment which we dwell in. Many still seem not to comprehend that the environment which we inhabit, like the air which we breathe, is life. The earth, for now, is our home. It is where we live, breathe, eat, raise our children, etc. Therefore, we cannot afford to destroy the environment because our whole essence depends on it. Consequently, when we imbibe positive attitudinal change towards the environment, we are sure of living free of any pollutants or hazards. Parks should not be turned into market places, toilets, refuse dumps or places where animals graze. On its part, the state government will continue to explore opportunity of its diverse town hall meetings and other such public outreaches to further impress on Lagosians on the imperative of living a healthy life through proper sanitation and environmental friendly activities. Ogunbiyi is of the Lagos State Ministry of Information & Strategy, Alausa, Ikeja. SUBSCRIPTIONS 01-2799101 07032496069 07054563299 The Brook, 6 Point Road, GRA, Apapa, Lagos, Nigeria. 01-2799100 LEGAL ADVISERS The Law Union MISSION STATEMENT To be a diversified provider of superior business, financial and management intelligence across platforms accessible to our customers anywhere in the world. 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Sunday 11 February 2018 comment is free Send 800word comments to SUNDAY BD 21 C002D5556 Comment IAN BURUMA Buruma, editor of The New York Review of Books, is the author of numerous books, including Murder in Amsterdam: The Death of Theo Van Gogh and the Limits of Tolerance. Chuck Close is an American artist, famous for painting large portraits. Severely paralyzed, Close is confined to a wheelchair. Former models have accused him of asking them to take their clothes off and of using sexual language that made them feel harassed. This behavior prompted the National Gallery in Washington, DC, to cancel a planned show of Close’s work. And Seattle University has removed a self-portrait by the artist from a university building. If we were to remove all the art from museums or galleries because we disapproved of the artists’ behavior, great collections would soon be severely depleted. Rembrandt cruelly mistreated his mistress, Picasso was beastly to his wives, Caravaggio lusted after young boys and was a murderer, and so on. And what about literature? Céline was a vicious anti-Semite. Wil- Moralism and the arts liam S. Burroughs shot his wife in a drunken haze, and Norman Mailer stabbed one of his. And movie directors? Forget sexually inappropriate language: Erich von Stroheim shot mass orgies for his own pleasure. Charlie Chaplin liked very young girls. And then there is Woody Allen, accused of but never charged with molesting his seven-year-old adopted daughter. The New York Times movie critic A.O. Scott wrote an interesting article about this. He grew up idolizing Allen. To a bookish young man, Allen, the anxious intellectual who still gets the girl, was a kind of role model. But now that we know the accusations against the comedian and movie director, we are forced, in Scott’s view, to reappraise the work in that light. There may be something sinister and immoral in the films that we should take into account. In other words, bad behavior, or even alleged bad behavior, can taint an artistic work, because the artist cannot be separated from his art. This is at least a more interesting proposition than the notion that art should be disqualified just because we don’t like the way the artist behaved in private. But is it right? Oscar Wilde famously said that there is no such thing as an immoral book, just well or badly written books. This is open to challenge. There is a moral component to most forms of human expression, including art. Moral depravity can make for bad art. This may be one reason why there are so few examples of good Nazi art. Racial hatred was morally reprehensible in a way that Communist idealism, for example, was not. Sergei Eisenstein made Communist propaganda films, but these are also great works of art. Leni Riefenstahl’s Nazi propaganda films are technically astonishing, but otherwise repellent. It is also true that art can transcend the private behavior of the artist. A writer, filmmaker, or painter who behaves badly toward wives or lovers can produce art that is deeply sympathetic to women. By the same token, perfectly behaved people can break all kinds of social taboos in their art. To judge the moral component of artistic expression, then, we must look not at the person who made it but at the work itself. Last year, an online petition with 8,000 signatures asked the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to remove a famous painting by Balthus, showing an adolescent girl sitting on a chair with a patch of her underwear showing. To see this as a form of child pornography, or “the objectification of children,” as the signatories did, seems highly dubious. Balthus was moved by the dreaminess of girls on the cusp of adulthood. But even if Balthus, in his private life, was attracted to young women, there is nothing in the painting that suggests moral depravity or abuse. The same can be said about Allen’s movies, whatever the truth may be about his alleged misdeeds. It is no secret that Allen finds young women attractive; his current wife was not yet 20 when he started an affair with her. She was also the adopted daughter of Allen’s partner at the time. One of Allen’s best known and most successful films, “Manhattan,” released in 1979, when he was in his forties, featured a relationship between a middle-aged man (Allen) and a young girl, played by Mariel Hemingway, who was 16 at the time of filming. These relationships were unconventional. Some might find them creepy. But this is not the same as molesting a child. Nor is there anything in “Manhattan,” or any other film by Allen, that reveals any interest in assaulting young children. This would be the case even if everything alleged against the director were true. Again, morality is not irrelevant. It is hard to imagine admiring art that espouses child abuse, racial hatred, or torture (even though this seems to get people much less agitated than sexual content). But just as we should not condemn a work of art because of the artist’s private behavior, we should also be careful about applying norms of social respectability to artistic expression. Some art is meant to provoke, transgress, and push boundaries. People can do things in works of imagination that they would never do in life. That is the way it should be. If we limited artistic expression to subjects that are commonly regarded as socially respectable, we would soon be left with moralistic kitsch, just the kind of thing rulers of authoritarian states like to promote in public, while doing things that are far worse than most artists would like to imagine. ©: Project Syndicate Abia’s renewed efforts in healthcare delivery OKECHUKWU KESHI UKEGBU Ukegbu writes from Umuahia. There is every hope that Abia State’s strides in the health sector will be redoubled this year. The state is poised to reshape its comprehensive, integrated Healthcare Delivery Framework as well as secondary health care centres by ensuring that every local government area has a functional and better-staffed general hospital, which will serve as outreach base to primary health centres and minimize the distance and stress involved in accessing tertiary hospitals. Also, efforts are on the speed lane to commission the state’s specialist hospital for child and maternal care, which is designed to ensure that no child is lost at birth in Abia State from 2018. The specialist hospital deserves more emphasis because of its importance. Infant mortality rate, which is the number of infant deaths for every 1,000 live births, is disturbing. Abia has made robust efforts to ensure that this menace is put at bay. Last year, the state through its Ministry of Health, the Nestle Nutrition Institute of Africa, the Nigeria Society of Neonatal Medicine, and Vicar Hope Foundation held a workshop which trained 100 primary health care personnel in Abia State on the skills of “Helping Babies Breathe”. The training enhanced the knowledge of the participants to help to drastically reduce neonatal asphyxia and infant mortality in the state. The trainees included doctors, midwives, nurses and community health extension workers drawn from private and government hospitals and primary health care centres, especially those in the rural areas where the need is greater. The training came on the heels of listing the state among six other states to benefit in funding the reduction of maternal and infant mortality and morbidity. Neonatal asphyxia, also known as perinatal asphyxia or birth asphyxia, is a medical condition resulting from deprivation of oxygen to a newborn infant that lasts long enough during the birth process to cause physical harm, usually to the brain. Medical experts define neonatal resuscitation as the intervention after a baby is born to help it breathe and to help its heart beat. This is because some babies need help with establishing their air flow, breathing, or circulation, and this intervention takes the form of helping them with airway, breathing, and circulation, also known as the ABCs. Before a baby is born, the placenta provides oxygen and nutrition to the blood and removes carbon dioxide. After a baby is born, the lungs provide oxygen to the blood and remove carbon dioxide. The transition from using the placenta to using the lungs for gas exchange begins when the umbilical cord is clamped or tied off, and the baby has its first breath. Many babies go through this transition without needing intervention. Besides, in Nigeria, neonatal death (death of infant within the first 28 days of life), is 48 per 1000 live births and almost half of infant death per annum results from poor maternal health and poor care at time of delivery, according to NDHS Report 2003. The major causes of these deaths are asphyxia, preterm, sepsis, neonatal tetanus, congenital conditions, diarrhea and others. It is also noted that globally, about one quarter of all neonatal deaths are caused by birth asphyxia. Therefore, effective resuscitation at birth can prevent a large proportion of these deaths. The Healthcare Outreach to the aged and vulnerable groups in Abia, a novel programme, will be strengthened and positioned this year to touch more lives. The importance of this health-care outreach cannot be over-emphasised because of the special place vulnerable groups occupy in our society. Vulnerable groups are groups who for some reasons are weak and vulnerable to human rights abuses. These groups are structurally discriminated against. And for this reason, they require special protection for the equal and effective enjoyment of their human rights. They include women and girls, children, refugees, internally displaced persons, stateless persons, national minorities, migrant workers, disabled persons, elderly persons, HIV positive persons and AIDS victims, among others. During his campaign, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu promised to provide effective and efficient healthcare services to all Abia people, in every part of the state, strengthen the 710 government-owned healthcare centres by improving their infrastructure, funding and improving the quality of healthcare professionals deployed in them, and partner world-class healthcare providers to train personnel and provide complimentary infrastructure. He has not reneged on his promise. As such, Abia’s strides in the health sector have attracted the attention of multi-nationals such as MTN. These strides include the upgrading of the School of Midwifery at Abiriba, School of Nursing at Aba, Umuahia and Amachara which prompted their reaccreditation by the Midwifery and Nursing Council of Nigeria, approval of funds for the construction of four 100-bed general hospitals at Okeipke, Arochukwu and Obingwa, upgrade of Departments of Paediatrics, Radiology, Surgery, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Cardiotomography, Ophthalmology, and Anesthesia at Abia State University, the proposed Super Tertiary Medical Facility at Obuaku, which is going to change the narrative in medical tourism, among others. Others are the “Save One Million Lives” campaign which targets one million under 5 children and women within their child-bearing ages, establishment of tuberculosis reference laboratory for the entire South-East region at Amachara Specialist Hospital, 102 therapeutic centres, 42 microscopy centres, as well as two gene experts’ machines in the state for diagnosis in the treatment of tuberculosis. The establishment of state-ofthe-art Sickle Diagnosis and Treatment Centre through the instrumentality of Vicar Hope Foundation, the pet project of Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu, the wife of Abia State governor, deserves mention here. The diagnosis and treatment centre will offer a huge relief to sickle cell patients by providing treatment at a subsidised rate. The disease has posed a serious concern to humankind as millions of people around the world, adults as well as children, suffer from it. WHO describes it as a potentially fatal disease and one of the main causes of premature death amongst under-5 children in various African countries. The disease, which is regarded as a major genetic disease in most countries in sub-Saharan Africa, is a genetic blood disorder that affects the haemoglobin within the red blood cells. The recurrent pain and complications caused by the disease can interfere with many aspects of the patient’s life, including education, employment and psychosocial development. The sickle-cell trait is now known to be widespread, reaching its highest prevalence in parts of Africa as well as among people with origins in equatorial Africa, the Mediterranean basin and Saudi Arabia. In Africa, the highest prevalence of sickle-cell trait occurs between latitudes 15° North and 20° South, ranging between 10 percent and 40 percent of the population in some areas. We cherish readers’ reactions to stories and articles published in BusinessDay. 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